The "First Step to Nobel Prize in Physics" is an annual competition in research projects in physics for secondary (high) school pupils organized by the Institute od Physics, Polish Academy of Sciences. This year the second competition of that type has been completed. Pupils from 36 countries took part in the first two competitions, what certainly should be treated as a great success. We have organized the above competition for the following reasons. During our contacts with secondary school pupils we discovered that some of them try to perform different physical investigations by themselves: at schools, in some laboratories and even at home. Then we decided to organize the National Competition in Pupils' Research Projects in Physics and next - after gaining some experience in the national scale - the international competition "First Step to Nobel Prize in Physics". Our aim was to recognize the effort of the pupils, give them a chance to compare their own achievements with the achievements of their colleagues and organize their work. One should underline that the "First Step" refers to quite different features (long term research work) of the pupils than the International Physics Olympiad (solving well formulated physics problems). The prizes in our competition are not typical. Instead of buying some items for our winners we decided to invite them to our Institute for a research stay. In our opinion in case of people whose hobby is physics such a form of prize is more valuable and more instructive than anything else. The aim of this article is to discuss a genesis of the competition, to present conditions of participation and to discuss the results.
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